Barringer Publishing Signs Author William A. Gralnick's New Memoir
War of the Itchy Balls and Other Tales from Brooklyn, New York - A Half-Life Memoir
By: William A. Gralnick
Mr. Gralnick's latest book, The War of the Itchy Balls, is a memoir of his childhood years growing up in Brooklyn, New York during the 50s and 60s. The book's title is taken from one of the memoir's stories. The story describes the ill-fated attempt of a group of middle-class Jewish kids facing off against a neighborhood gang by weaponizing "itchy balls"—the street name for the rock-hard American Sycamore tree's seed pods..
Mr. Gralnick takes us back to the days of Coney Island, Nathan's and the Brooklyn Dodgers. From early childhood through his high school years, we glimpse life in Brooklyn during those "Wonder Years."
This coming-of-age half-life memoir is the first in a series. Told in the gentle voice of the television show, The Wonder Years, the book reminisces about life through the eyes of a child from three to seventeen, from prior to P.S. 217 to graduation from Midwood High School. It tells of "spauldeens"
The borough of Brooklyn, New York City's largest, is iconic. If Brooklyn were not a borough of New York City, it would be America's fourth largest city. From its legendary baseball team to its world-famous bridge, Brooklyn is one of those places that doesn't need a state to identify it. There are other Brooklyns, even a beautiful fashion model, so named, but when someone says they are from Brooklyn, that's all that's necessary. The only thing missing is "Where in Brooklyn?" Even today, those who grew up in one section often look, sound, and act differently than those from another section. You would rarely mistake someone from Flatbush from a Canarsie Brooklynite.
One doesn't have to be a New Yorker or Jewish to enjoy this funny, heartwarming collection of Brooklyn tales. Born and raised in Brooklyn, Mr. Gralnick has produced a universal coming-of-age memoir. After reading excerpts, Jews and Gentiles alike have echoed an Asheville, North Carolina minister, who said, "While these are not my stories, I could relate to them because they were similar to my own experiences."
Projected launch date for The War of the Itchy Balls is summer, 2019.
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William A. Gralnick